Ecohydrology Study of the Quinebaug River
A Research Project on River Restoration
Final Report December 2004
This report was prepared for NEIWPCC by Dr. Piotr Parasiewicz, Instream Habitat Program, and the New York Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit at Cornell University. It was produced under a contract with Millennium Power Partners, L.P., and is part of a multidisciplinary investigation required by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Section 404 permit and by the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection Section 401 Water Quality Certification for the Millennium Power Project in Charlton, Mass.
The report summarizes five years of research that was initiated in 1999. The researchers focused on the assessment of the Quinebaug River's biophysical conditions, the identification of deficits, and the determination of potential improvement measures for the Quinebaug River. The mesohabitat simulation model for the target fish community was established for the upper 34 km of the river. Five dominant species (fallfish, common shiner, white sucker, longnose dace, and blacknose dace) of the target fish community were targeted in the model. The researchers analyzed hydromorphology, fish habitat, fish density, invertebrate samples and temperature data to determine present condition and restoration potential.
The Quinebaug River is a fourth-order river with multiple impoundments and a history of industrial use. Within the study area, the river sections demonstrate a wide range in condition, type, and degree of environmental impact. The study identified a number of ecological deficits with regard to fish habitat, river morphology, flow and thermal regime, as well as the presence of pollution. The report includes a list of integrative restoration recommendations, which was provided by the researchers to the project management team for further consideration.
Due to the length of the report, only the
executive summary is available for download from
this page. For copies of the complete report on CD,
contact NEIWPCC at 978-323-7929.